Mayor’s Proposal to Expedite Environmental Review for Certain Housing Scheduled for Public Hearings 

February 1, 2024

Building on its “Get Stuff Built” plan, Mayor Eric Adams’ administration has proposed amendments to the Rules of the City of New York that would remove layers of environmental review for certain residential developments. The proposal, known as “Green Fast Track for Housing,” is scheduled for a joint public hearing with the City Planning Commission (CPC), the Department of Housing Preservation & Development (HPD), and the Mayor’s Office of Environmental Coordination (MOEC) on February 7, 2024. The Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) will hold its own public hearing on February 7, 2024, and the Board of Standards and Appeals (BSA) will hold its public hearing on February 12, 2024.

“We are going to meaningfully speed up the review process for proposals that are good for both housing affordability and the climate,” said Department of City Planning Director Dan Garodnick in a press release. “This change will save valuable time and money to deliver homes for New Yorkers while maintaining important environmental safeguards.”

If approved, the proposed amendments would designate residential development projects meeting specific criteria as a “Type II” action under the City Environmental Quality Review process, which means that neither an Environmental Assessment nor Impact Statement would be needed. As part of the proposal, the BSA, HPD, and MOEC would each adopt its own list of Type II actions that would mirror the CPC’s existing list and, if approved, would include these newly proposed criteria.

According to the Mayor’s Office, Green Fast Track for Housing has the potential to cut up to two years of environmental review time and save projects an average of $100,000, enabling more expeditious residential development while maintaining environmental standards and delivering on the administration’s plan to address the city’s housing crisis.

To qualify as a Type II action under the proposal, a project cannot exceed a height of 250 feet, must be limited to 175 or fewer dwelling units in low-density residential zoning districts, and can be no more than 250 dwelling units in medium- and high-density residential zoning districts (and other similar circumstances). Projects must also meet a list of criteria intended to provide environmental safeguards, including a commitment not to use fossil fuels, having a construction duration of less than 24 months, and meeting specific standards related to hazardous materials, industrial emissions, and ambient noise. A determination regarding archaeological sensitivities will also be required from the Landmarks Preservation Commission.

“Our city is facing two monumental challenges — the climate crisis and the housing crisis — and the Green Fast Track will help us address both,” said Maria Torres-Springer, Deputy Mayor for Housing, Economic Development, and Workforce. “By creating a streamlined process for climate-friendly housing, we are delivering more housing, building faster, and saving money.”

The Mayor’s office is currently accepting public comment on the proposal. The CPC and BSA are expected to vote on the proposed amendments 30 to 60 days following the public hearings. Should the CPC and BSA vote to approve, MOEC and HPD would each adopt a Type II list, including the new Type II criteria, and DEP would modify its Environmental Designation rules to conform with the approved amendments.

We will continue to follow Green Fast Track for Housing as it progresses through the public review process. 

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Vivien Krieger

Co-Chair, Zoning, Land Use & Development

(212) 883-2228

Rachel Scall


(212) 453-3992

Sunny J. Bhatt

Planning Services Director

(212) 453-3990

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